Online Education: Teaching in a Time of Change

Online Conference
Organized by: AMPS, Routledge, University of Manchester

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About This Event


Context: Recent events across the world of academia have brought into full light the various agendas around online education and research. As universities, schools and colleges closed across the world in 2020, researchers, teachers and students scrambled to adapt to a whole host of new pedagogical tools, communicative techniques, learning methods and teaching styles almost overnight. Some survived, others thrived, while some struggled and ultimately went ‘out of business’.

For some disciplines, the transition was seamless, with lectures, tests and projects administered online with little or no change at all. Other disciplines writhed at having to forego the peer-to-peer learning environment of the classroom, the dynamic interaction of the design studio, or the personal contact of the open-ended seminar discussion. Skills-based courses such as model making lost their contact with ‘materiality’ while the physicality of lab experiments on materials or prototypes was totally lost.

Despite the ‘shock of the new’ all this represented, the debates around the virtual classroom, the online studio, the remote seminar, and distance education more generally, were far from new. Universities like Purdue Global in the US and the Open University in the UK had been operating this way for years. Experiments into how to teach design online had been happening for decades across the world, the evolution of remote educational interfaces had been evolving non-stop since the 1980s.

What then, is the “new present” for education in the discipline areas of this conference, and what will tomorrow hold?

Disciplines: The conference is thematically open and publishes works connected with key themes in:

  • Education
  • Teaching Practice
  • Theories of Learning
  • Educational Technologies
  • Pedagogy
  • Educational Psychology
  • Learning spaces

Cross-disciplines: There is particular interest in cross-disciplinary approaches and, more specifically still, the initiative will set up platforms for researchers and teachers whose work connects to issues of life, design, representation and the quality of the built environment:

  • Art
  • Design
  • Architecture
  • Sustainability
  • Construction
  • Health
  • Sociology
  • Geography
  • Urban Economics
  • History
  • Media
  • Communications

Themes: This virtual conference welcomes presentations from researchers and teachers on how they operate in the ‘online classroom, studio or lab’ and how they function ‘in the field’ using the new technologies available to them.

It welcomes papers on: Emergency remote responses to the ‘online switch’ produced by the Coronavirus; techniques for teaching traditionally ‘physical’ activities like prototyping online; technologies that facilitate real-time discussion on designed objects, buildings and places; the potential shifts in student demographics initiated by online education; how internationalization in the Higher Education sector will be affected by ‘place free’ universities; how place-focused disciplines such as geography and urban planning can respond to the ‘impossibility’ of place bound study; how do study tours get replaced by virtual tours in disciplines like art history…. and more.

Formats: This conference is global in its reach. The issues it deals with cross geographical boundaries. As a virtual conference it has several presentation formats available:

Zoom: for real-time interaction between presenter and audience

Pre-recorded film: for presenters who wish their work to be permanently available

Streaming: for audience members who wish to view all presentations in their own time

Written Papers: for delegates who seek publication

See: AMPS Academic YouTube channel

Information: AMPS Virtual Conferences

Publications: Delegates can present at conference with or without a written paper. Written papers should be 3000 word length. Formatting instructions will follow. All papers are double blind peer reviewed and will be included in the AMPS Conference Proceedings Series, ISSN 2398-9467.

Selected authors will be included in a Special Issue of the journal Architecture_MPS and the primary conference book with Routledge. The full range of publishers involved include:

  • Routledge Taylor & Francis
  • UCL Press
  • Intellect Books
  • Cambridge Scholars Publishing
  • Vernon Press
  • Libri Publishing

Key dates:

  • 05 Dec 2020: Abstracts (Round One)
  • 15 Dec 2020: Feedback
  • 05 Mar 2021: Abstracts (Round Two)
  • 15 Mar 2021: Feedback

Conference: 21-23 April 2021

  • 30 May 2021: Full Paper Submissions (where applicable)
  • 30 August 2021: Feedback for publication
  • 30 December 2021: Publication begins


  • Start Date:
    Wed, 21 Apr 2021
  • End Date:
    Fri, 23 Apr 2021
  • Proposal/Abstract/Paper Deadline:
    Sat, 05 Dec 2020


Event Website